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post Sep 14 2005, 07:30 PM
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why do you analyze the core?, what are some of the information you can recieve from it? huh.gif
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post Sep 22 2005, 06:37 PM
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QUOTE(Katie @ Sep 14 2005, 07:30 PM)
why do you analyze the core?, what are some of the information you can recieve from it? huh.gif

Hi Katie!

To answer the question, I should probably first explain what a core sample is since some people might think or the word "core" as the center of the Earth. We can't get that deep biggrin.gif. A core sample is taken by a hollow tube that is pushed into the seafloor. Since many areas of the seafloor are covered with relatively soft material, the tube can go fairly deep. Think of putting a drinking straw into a potato or something...when you pull it out, some of the potato comes out in the straw. Seriously....Try it! biggrin.gif

Anyway, since this sediment gets thicker and thicker with time, the deeper the coring tube goes, the farther back in time you are looking. This core sample of sediment can be analyzed for the size of the individual particles that make up the sediment, the type of particles, the type of any microscopic animals or plants that may be in it, etc.

The information that can be obtained from these types of studies may be what the climate was like years ago, what types of animals or plants lived then, where the sediment came from, and so on. All of this information, since it can be obtained from the present to thousands or even millions of years in the past depending on how long the core sample was, can help us determine any patterns in climate change or ocean currents. Know this can help determine what we might expect to happen in the future.

There's even more that can be learned from it, but that's a pretty good start!

Thanks again for the question.

Steve Marshall
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